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Last modified: Monday, July 26, 2010

Indiana Disability Poll gives Indiana a C, says IU research and training center

July 26, 2010

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana cities and towns deserve a grade of C, on average, for progress in implementing the Americans with Disabilities Act, according to a survey of people with disabilities, their family members and advocates.

More than 835 people responded to the 2010 ADA in Your Community Poll, record participation for Indiana's annual Disability Poll, including the Report Card on ADA implementation. The landmark civil-rights law was signed 20 years ago today (July 26).

ADA Report Card

The Disability Poll and Report Card have been a joint activity of ADA-Indiana, the Governor's Council for People with Disabilities, Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services and the Indiana Institute on Disability and Community. Vicki Pappas and her staff at the Indiana Institute's Center for Planning and Policy Studies conducted the survey, analyzed the results, and prepared the ADA Report Card.

Results of the 2010 poll were announced last week at a news conference and at the ADA Summit, both held in Indianapolis. Respondents also indicated that Indiana's "most important" priorities for action under the ADA should be:

  • Making more employment opportunities available for people with disabilities
  • Providing accessible transportation
  • Educating businesses and government officials about their rights and responsibilities under the ADA
  • Providing accommodations for employment

Other areas that respondents said needed more attention included educating people with disabilities about their rights and responsibilities, removing physical barriers in buildings and providing communication supports and materials in alternative formats.

The Report Card shows that while respondents see progress over the past 20 years, they also indicate that there is still a long way to go. Barriers to community participation and employment still persist, the respondents said, and while Indiana is celebrating some clear accomplishments since 1990, more needs to happen.

Organizers said the Report Card can provide a blueprint for community leaders, advocates, government officials, and others as they plan future education, information dissemination, and policy activities. The goal is for Indiana and people with disabilities to realize the full promise of the ADA.

In conjunction with the Great Lakes ADA Center in Chicago, the Center for Planning and Policy Studies staff also conducted the 2010 ADA in Your Community Poll in the five other states of the Great Lakes region: Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin. Similar Report Cards were also created for them, with results very similar to those in Indiana -- Illinois, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin received C grades while Minnesota's grade was C . Priorities for action for the states were also very similar to Indiana's.

Indiana's Report Card may be viewed and/or downloaded on ADA-Indiana's website: A print copy or other alternative formats may be requested by calling the Institute at 812-855-6508 or e-mailing Report Cards of the other states are available on the Great Lakes ADA Center's website: